Following on from the Mark Zuckerberg announcement early this year about changes to Facebook’s algorithms limiting organic business posts, small businesses are poised to prosper if they get smart about how they use Groups.
If people remember why people do business with other people, then Facebook can still be a great tool to market your business. Regardless of the changes to Facebook’s algorithms, a lot of business at the small business level is built on relationships. That is what Facebook is all about.
Many small businesses do not have big budgets to spend on marketing especially social media advertising and have relied on organic connections to grow. That is where Facebook Groups come into play.
There are many ways a business can make it work for them. Facebook Groups helps you:
- connect with people who are looking for assistance with their business
- share your skills and experience
- build a loyal following of people (who are tapping into your knowledge)
- connect and build relationships
To make the Facebook Groups work for you, you must be part of the community. Don’t just be a lurker. Take part in the conversations. Share your knowledge and experience. Like any community, the more you share and are known, the more people know, like and trust you.
It is especially a great time for women in business because there are so many Facebook Groups set up by women for women in business. If your target audience are women, then there are 1000s of women on Facebook talking, sharing and asking questions in groups.
Another way to use Facebook Groups is to not spread yourself too thin. It is really tempting to join lots of groups – join any have great themes where you can share events, promote services and products, offer tips and ask questions.
If you join too many, it is like have too many friends. You can’t develop strong relationships if you are trying to connect with a lot of people. Pick the groups that resonate the most with you – you like the themes, their founder and the other people in the group.
Once you have decided on the two to three groups you want to be in, get working on creating great content to share. You can repurpose content you have already created for you business page and share into groups around the theme days but you also want to leave room to share organically. This means spending time in each group, looking at other people’s posts and seeing where you can add value. – what questions can you answer, what tips can you share, what ideas can you offer.
The most important thing is to be real. Don’t pretend to be someone you’re not. Use your voice and tell your stories. Groups are a great place to build relationships and get business, so the people you are interacting with want to see that you know what you are talking about. Make sure you are relatable.
Women in business have so many opportunities using Facebook Groups. Connecting and communicating is something we do well as women. We network differently to men and Facebook Groups are a great extension of face-to-face networking.
The idea is to show up and communicate. In business, we must use the resources we have available to us. With marketing budgets tight or non-existent in small business, we adapt.